Five for Friday: intellectual freedom activities today at #ALA2013

Freedom to Read Foundation, Midwinter Meeting/Annual Conference, Office for Intellectual Freedom

In addition to weaving through the hundreds of thousands of Blackhawks celebrants descending on downtown Chicago, here are five great programs/meetings/events going on today at the 2013 ALA Annual Conference:

1. IFC I & II – 8:30-10:00 a.m. & 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m, Palmer House, Water Tower Parlor

The ALA Intellectual Freedom Committee will be discussing some of the major issues of the day involving intellectual freedom, including privacy/surveillance issues, censorship trends, and much more. First of six sessions through Monday.

2. IF101 – 12:30-1:30 p.m., Hilton Chicago, Marquette Room

Intellectual Freedom 101, part of the Conference 101 series of programs, is a fast-paced overview of the various intellectual freedom arms of the Association, with information on how you can get involved in the efforts to protect the freedom to read!

3. The Friday Conversation – Gun Violence: Community Voices and Library Responses – 1:00-3:30 p.m., McCormick Place S105a-c

OIF helped to coordinate this interactive discussion about how libraries can play a part in responding to the tragedy of gun violence. Among the speakers will be David Horowitz, executive director of the Media Coalition, which just released  “Only a Game,” a study debunking many myths about the impact of new media on issues of violence.

4. Opening General Session – 4:00-5:15 p.m., McCormick Place Hall B1

The Freedom to Read Foundation Roll of Honor Award will be presented to Judith Platt and Russ Feingold (the latter in absentia) for their remarkable efforts to defend the freedom to read, privacy, and other civil liberties.  Keynote: Steven Levitt, author of Freakonomics.

5. Exhibits Opening Reception – 5:15-7:00 p.m., McCormick Place

FTRF has a booth this year, shared with the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund! Stop by Booth 2650 in the Graphic Novel Pavilion for lots of great stuff, including comics, art, Carolyn Forsman jewelry, shirts, literature, and much more!

And, of course, those of you who bought tickets by Monday’s deadline will be joining us at the fabulous Chicago Cultural Center for the IFRT 40th Anniversary Celebration!

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